The purpose of life
I get a lot of questions on Quora about the purpose of life and many of those who are asking are deeply confused and sad. They do not know what to do with their life and some are considering suicide because of this lack of understanding of what to do. So, let us address this very relevant question.
The larger perspective
In order to understand the purpose of life we have to look at life in a perspective that is larger than the one offered by the one-life theory. The theory claiming that we only live once is the veil that hides our real purpose. We will never be able to understand life, our own fate and purpose as long as we believe that we only have one life.
The one-life theory has never been proved, but still it is predominant today in the Western world because we and science think that only physical matter exists. We think that we are identical to our physical body and that our existence began at birth and will be extinguished at death. But that is far from the case, because behind and before the physical body we have our spiritual body in the shape of our consciousness / aura and this body consists of energy. This body is not visible but it is measurable. Our energy body is who we really are and we are always alive in this body, whether it is attached to a physical body or not.
The materialistic intellectualized jungle
When we think we only live once, this affects the way we live our life. We become very self-centred and egoistic and want to have as much fun as possible, grab as many riches as possible with no thought about how this attitude affects others. It is the law of the jungle that rules as long as the one-life theory rules. We do not mind if we hurt, harm or cheat others, or even kill them, as long as these actions provide advantages for ourselves. We have no idea that these actions will become our own fate in a future life, because we do not think there will be a future life, and we have no idea about the law of karma, which rules our fate. This law decrees that we reap as we sow – in this life or in a future life. So, we live in an intellectualized jungle and think all that matters is to be able to show off and polish our ego.
The jungle belongs to predators and as long as we live in an intellectualized jungle we are still to a large degree animals that honour the killing principle. We may call ourselves humans but while we can still lie, steal, cheat, harm, go to war and kill we are not real humans. We are intellectualized predators that think only of ourselves.
But as we live life after life, we reap all the actions we once did to others on our own body. And this reaping has the effect that we suffer as we once made others suffer. But our suffering has the advantage that it transforms us to become more and more humane. When we have experienced on our own body what it is like to be stolen from, cheated, and killed, then, sooner or later, we stop stealing, cheating and participating in the killing of other living beings, included the animals that we like to eat. We will stop, because we take the essence of all the lessons learned in former lives with us into our next life, so in that way we grow wiser and more humane and human for each life we live.
So, two extremely relevant but totally overlooked aspects prevent us from understanding the purpose of life: The one-life theory and the law of karma.
We are at a crossroad
The reaping of our past actions on our own body will take us to a crossroad. The crossroad between the animal kingdom and the real human kingdom. We will reach a point at which we are no longer intellectualized animals, but real humans, who only want peace and harmonious coexistence for all, who are kind, helpful and tolerant and who live to serve others, who can forgive easily and who emanate universal love to all living beings: plants, animals and other humans. When enough of us reach that point, a kingdom of peace and love will arise on this planet. War, unrest, terrorism, greed, selfishness and the eating of animals will be something that we can then only read about in the history books and look back at with horror.
Right now we are still mainly living in the intellectualized jungle where it is every man for himself, but the law of karma will see to it, that we will reap all the unwise and selfish actions we once performed to others, and in this way we will advance for each life we live. In that way the real human kingdom will be born in our midst and right now it is only a foetus. But with nurture, tender loving care and enough time it will grow into a strong, beautiful, intelligent and all-loving human being. And this wise and tolerant being will then rule the planet.
The one-life theory will soon collapse as the utter lie it is. What we are experiencing is the downfall of the jungle culture and the pains of labour of a new culture: the culture of the real, all-loving human being.
Our purpose right now
Our purpose right now is to work on our own progress towards becoming more human and humane. We can start by making a list of our unfinished sides and ask ourselves: do I lie, steal, cheat and hurt others? Am I greedy and selfish? Am I jealous and intolerant? Do I hate others and have enemies? Do I treat others in ways I would not like to be treated myself? Do I participate in the killing of other living beings via my diet? Am I always kind and helpful? Do I express racist, sexist, ageist or homophobic views? Am I the best possible version of myself? Do I treat all other living beings with respect and love? Do I cultivate my good sides and work towards becoming a real, finished human being?
There is always room for improvement for all of us and the more we work to improve our good sides and tone down our unfinished sides the better will our lives become.
Getting the process towards becoming more human off its feet is a huge purpose to have, a purpose that will last us several lifetimes, but getting it started and seeing it as the ultimate goal of our development is something that can give our lives a real purpose and meaning.
In this process there is one other thing that we can do: we can go out and help others. Be a friend for the friendless, a helper for the helpless, a support for the homeless, a server of hot soups and provider of meals for the hungry. We can show kindness to the down and out, to the lonely and miserable and remember that the love that we sow will be the love that we reap.
It is only when we leave the jungle behind and begin to become knowledgeable about the spiritual reality of reincarnation and the law of karma that real change can happen.
So, we must study the spiritual reality via spiritual science so that we really understand and internalize that this is not the only life we live and that what we do to others we eventually do to ourselves.
The study of the spiritual science of Martinus is a life-long project and it should keep you occupied and entertained for at least 2-3 lifetimes. Should you want to have a quick fix and a shortcut to the work, Maria McMahon and I have written the Spiritual Nutshell Series of which the third volume has just been published: Life after Death in a Nutshell.
Links to the books:
- Reincarnation in a Nutshell
- Fate and Karma in a Nutshell
- Life After Death in a Nutshell: